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some of its treasures. Nasrulla Mirza, being worsted,
sought aid from Karim Khan, but this was refused, and
soon afterwards he died.
Meshed was next seized by Mamish Khan of Chinaran,
a petty Kurdish chief, who held it for five years until the
authority of Shah Rukh was restored by Timur Shah, the
Durrani monarch, who retained the suzerainty established
by his father. Of the independent rulers, Ishak Khan
Karai was the most celebrated. A man of low birth, he
occupied Turbat-i-Haydari, some eighty miles to the
south of Meshed, and built a caravanserai with money
supplied by the chief of his tribe. Before the completion
of this building, which was strongly fortified, intrigues
had resulted in the death of his master, whose sons fled
the country, and Ishak Khan gradually carved out a
province for himself and became a power in the land.
In the south of the province, Mir Hasan Khan of
Tabas, a descendant of the Beni Shayban who had aided
Lutf Ali, held a district bordering on the Lut and played a
leading part in Khorasan. Of the other districts, Nishapur
was independent under a Bayat chief; Kain was under an
Arab ruler descended from the Khuzayma ; Turshiz was
ruled by another Arab family of the Mishmast tribe.
Zafaranlu Kurds governed in Kuchan and Shadillu Kurds
in Bujnurd ; Sabzawar was held by a chief of the Ghilichi,
a Turkish tribe, and finally Sistan was ruled by a petty
chief who claimed Keianian descent.1
We now turn westward to Kurdistan. The descend-
ants of the ancient Karduchi maintained almost complete
independence on the Persian side of the frontier, and on
the Turkish side only the sections occupying accessible
lands obeyed the Pasha of Baghdad. Of the Kurdish
chiefs on the Persian side of the frontier, the most
powerful was Khusru Khan, Vali of Ardelan. From
Sinna, his capital, he ruled a large district, and at this city
his son entertained Malcolm in princely fashion in 1810.
The Vali of Ardelan had supported the claims of Karim
Khan, but afterwards, having espoused the cause of Ismail
1 It has been my task to trace the fortunes of these tribes, almost aU pf which arc
to be found in or near the dUtncts they ruled a century ago.